“As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name Him Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”
How would you feel if you found out that the woman you were engaged to became pregnant and it wasn’t your child? It almost sounds like something out of a soap opera. Yet this was the reality for Joseph, King David’s descendant. In fact so real was the emotion of this situation, Joseph planned to quietly separate from Mary. However as today’s verse shows, and angel of the Lord gave a prophetic word to Joseph in a dream to ease his fears as to how this situation happened and what to do next.
However, the angel offered no explanation. He gave no apology, and no further instructions of any kind – and yet Joseph hurried to comply with God’s command through the angel’s words. He immediately took Mary home to be his wife and named her Son Jesus the moment He was born.
At least three other times Joseph got instructions from an angel in a dream, and all three times he immediately complied (2:13-15, 19-21, 22-23). Today’s readers might think, ‘Hey, if I got a message from an angel, I’d listen too’… Really? Not everyone in the Bible did. Pilate’s wife ignored God’s dream about crucifying Jesus, and King Nebuchadnezzar ignored God’s dream about associating with the bovines. Yet Joseph, in all three dreams, completely obeyed God.
That’s the kind of man God looked for to rock His Son’s cradle. And it’s still the kind of man He seeks to rock the world. 1
1 Some of today’s content is taken from a commentary on the life of Joseph in the NLT ‘Man’s Bible’: PG 1255